Pest control

Pest is one of the common problems in archive preservation even when effective control of climatic condition is achieved. Not to mention when the relative humidity rises to higher than 65%, mould will appear first, then insects and rodents. An integrated pest management plan has to be devised according to the following rules and guidelines and the specific situation of archival storage environment :

(a)prohibit eating or drinking in repository of archival materials;
(b)inspect all incoming materials (including items returned from loan) before put them to the archive storage;
(c)quarantine all suspected items to ascertain infestation extent;
(d)conduct fumigation treatment to eradicate insect infestation;
(e)clean all treated items and inspect them again before returning them to the archive storage;
(f)keep all surfaces (floor, shelves, drawers) clean and dry;
(g)monitor pest activities continuously by installing and regularly inspecting insect traps not only in storage areas, but also in working areas and all entrances or exits in the building; and
(h)pay attention to spots of generally high humidity in the building such as toilet, plant room, pantry, office and areas with no air-conditioning.

In case active pest infestation is found, professional advice should be sought from conservators.